we're gonna live forever this is "nightline." >> tonight, insta-quitting. her life looked picture perfect on instagram but she says the reality wasn't so pretty. >> i was miserable. >> exposing all the smoke and mirrors behind those envy-inducing photos this former social media star is facing skeptics who say even this is a stunt. carrie's country.
family was in her future. never knew >> carrie underwood was definitely destined to cohost the cmas. the former "american idol" opening up about her original idols and what's next. these. everywhere. as hotels hire sleep experts to make you feel at home. but first the "nightline 5." >> you get used to sweaty odors in your car. you think it smells fine but your passengers smell this. eliminate odors you've gone nose mind to up to 30 days with the febreze car vent clip. jcpenney, the entire store's on sale. get an extra $10 off when you spend $25 or more with coupon. amazing by buys on sweaters and boots and shoes for her. jcpenney.
good evening. tonight we get a rare glimpse life. the social media darling coming clean about the painful toll it takes just to try to keep up appearances. what really goes into those envy-inducing photos and why are some now questioning her motives? >> i quit social media for my 12-year-old self. >> reporter: her 19-year-old self seemed picture perfect on instagram. over 500,000 fall followers making a career on social media. two days ago this shocking confession on youtube. >> i was miserable. i had it all. and i was miserable because when
numbers, you let yourself be defined by something that is not pure, that is not real, and that is not love. >> reporter: she said it would be her last youtube post. and that she'd shut it all down. >> taking myself off social media is a wakeup call for me. >> reporter: she deleted most of the thousands of photos on her account. and the few she left up she changed their captions to reveal what she says really was going on. not real life. i didn't pay for the dress, took countless photos trying to look hot for instagram. and she writes, not real life. took over 100 in similar poses trying to make my stomach look good. and there is nothing zen about trying to look zen, taking a photo of you trying to be zen, and proving you're zen on instagram. pulling the curtain back on what she says is the painful cost of trying to look flawless online. >> everything i did was for
>> reporter: her takedown on social media was catapulting her star even higherer. outpouring of support online from all over the world including celebrities, sofia bush posted, my girlfriends and i spent the better part of yesterday discussing this awesome serving of social truth. the support prompting one more video i just feel so grateful that this has been spread, that this is actually getting out there. >> reporter: she told us via skype from her native australia that she never intended to create a big fuss. >> what i'm saying isn't revolutionary. i just think this discussion, how much value we put into online. i spent five years wishing to be this perfect person online. and i spent three years every day working really hard at it. i think if people understood just the amount of effort and time that goes into perfecting your life and being that
wouldn't be so as operational. i think the reality is quite sad. >> reporter: she started dabbling in social media as a tween, in middle school. >> i actually used myspace for six months when i was 12. 14 is when instagram came out and i used it then. it was just like a selfie that i put up. and i remember so clearly hoping it would get some likes. as i think we all do when we put ourselves out, we want to feel valued. >> reporter: she posted more, got more followers, polishing her instagram game, posing hundreds of times for photos like this one. her images so allureing she says she got paid to post, something many of her followers didn't know. >> what, paid instagram posts? i was like, people don't know this? >> reporter: she says it's one of the reasons for the change of heart. another? >> i guess it was talking to
someone who's 14 and -- i said to her this thing, when i was your age. i looked at models. i remember measuring my stomach and looking in the mirror and thinking, why aren't i like them? she burst out in tears and said, i do that. and it was just like, far out. >> this girl is standing up for other girls and giving them permission to stop trying to be so perfect online. she's saying, this is fake. what we're doing is fake. you don't have to feel badly about yourselves because nobody can look like me without trying so hard. >> reporter: put not all the reaction has been so positive. her detractors posting youtube fake. >> when she says they're all >> reporter: including two of her former friends from l.a., also with huge carefullily cultivated social media followings. spread this message how social media is so horrible is because of social media. >> reporter: some questioning her true motives. because of this.
then yeah, please support me. because i can't afford real life. >> reporter: she says money and publicity wasn't her goal. >> i don't want likes, i don't want followers, not views, that was my own personal want. >> reporter: the pressure to present a perfect image of yourself on social media seems inescapable. >> i on instagram girls feel they have to put forward the most perfect picture of themselves. girls spend all day taking the perfect selfie, filtering it, making it flawless before they put it up. >> reporter: social media competitiveness can create bad blood. something instagram queen taylor swift, with over 53 million followers, warns her fans about. >> i'm very well aware that it has never been easier to compare yourself to other people and feel like your life falls short. it's never been easier than it is in 2015. >> reporter: more and more teens are spending vast amounts of
time consuming media. up to nine hours a day, according to a recent report. >> no one says, oh my gosh, i had the best night on youtube last night, it was amazing. or, that night on instagram? eight hours? best time of my life. we don't say that because nothing takes over real human connection. >> reporter: but there are plenty of people who have made real human connections online. like youtube stars joshua evans and colleen ballenger. >> will you marry me? >> yes, of course. >> reporter: whose romance has been faithfully documented for millions of viewers on youtube. and there are plenty happily cashing in on their social media popularity. like matthew naska, whose modeling career was launched thanks to his instagram feed. asina says for her a picture-perfect line is not one lived on instagram. >> nothing's personal, not everyone has to do it is what i'm saying, you know. >> reporter: she says she's now
focusing on her life offline and wants her followers to do the same. >> i just think, give yourself a break and see what happens. experiment. talk to people in your real life. don't just sit in your room reading and replying. talk about to it people around you, talk about to it yourself. >> reporter: she achieved her intended goal of dropping out of the fray so effectively, since this interview last night, we can't even get ahold of her. up next, our robin roberts sits down with carrie underwood. cohosting the cma awards, performing songs from her new album. there's barely enough time for a smoke break. i'm chris bosh. when i was sidelined with blood clots in my lung, it was serious. fortunately, my doctor had a game plan. treatment with xarelto . hey guys! hey, finally, somebody i can look up to... ...besides arnie. xarelto is proven to treat and help reduce the risk of dvt and pe blood clots. xarelto is also proven to reduce the risk of stroke in people with afib, not caused by a heart valve problem. for people with afib
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for a limited time your choice of mkc, mkz gas or hybrid for $369 a month with zero due at signing. you know, with all the glitz and glamor of the cma awards still in the air, tonight we're hanging with cohost carrie underwood. country music's reigning princess. the new mom taking us inside her private world, telling our robin roberts why the family she says she never knew she wanted changed not only her music but her life. >> reporter: carrie underwood is the reigning queen of country. effortlessly going from performing her latest hit "smoke break" at the cmas, to -- >> we just have the best show lined up for you.
you're not going to believe it. some of the best -- whoa! >> reporter: she does it all. sometimes i need a smoke break >> reporter: carrie's new album "story teller" is already number one on the country charts. it includes a ballad to the two great loves of her life. husband nhl star mike fisher and their 8-month-old son isaiah. >> i can't wait for people to hear the last track. and i feel that these two really inspired that track. >> yeah, they did. >> tell us about it. >> it's called "what i never knew i always wanted." that kind of sums it up. body of them. the men in hi life. my life. i never really pictured myself getting married. now i couldn't imagine my life without either one of them. >> reporter: being a working mother adds a whole new dimension to an already very full life.
there's so much more to think about in life. even in simple daily tasks, you know. like leaving the house. now i have to make sure i'm ready, make sure he's ready, get his bag packed up, do we have bottles, do i have milk, do i have all his stuff, do i have diapers? it adds a lot of time onto my day every day. just planning things for him. but, i mean, he's such an easy baby. and smiley and happy. and loves whoever's holding him. he loves people. he wakes up smiling. give me one more chance >> reporter: carrie is not without examples of women who have held it in balance before. her idol dolly parton. working 9 to 5 >> reporter: who sang the working woman's anthem "9 to 5." i'll all taking and no giving >> she's tiny but she's larger than life. she's just got this air about her.
hike all the time, everywhere. that's just who she is. i imagine her, does she sit around her house in sweat pants with no makeup on? i've decided, no, she doesn't. use your mind and they never give you credit >> reporter: carrie performed her own version of "9 to 5" at the grand ole opry. 9 to 5 for service and devotion >> reporter: words she has come to live by. >> it must be fun to perform. >> it is. there's a lot of fast words. and notes. because i've been singing this song for years. i feel like i spent the beginning part of it trying to emulate dolly then realizing that was impossible. i feel like we put our own groove onto it. >> reporter: born and raised in oklahoma, fame was not something she sought but quickly found after she auditioned for "american idol"? 2004 while still in college. >> i will make a prediction, not
will sell more records than any other previous "idol" winner. >> reporter: a prediction from a guy who knew talent when he saw it carrie underwood! >> reporter: she won the fourth season of the show and became an instant country star. with songs like "jesus take the wheel." jesus take the wheel take it from my hands cause i can't do this on my own >> reporter: and "don't forget to remember me." don't forget to remember me >> reporter: but it was her cross-over hit "before he cheats" that catapulted her career to superstardom. maybe next time he'll think before he cheats >> "before he cheats." how did that song make its way to you? >> golly. i mean, at the time i was just listening to demos. i remember hearing it and immediately liking it. like i would totally sing along
to that in my car. >> that was the one that it wasn't only on the country charts, but just about every chart, there it was. >> yeah. >> had to be a great feeling. >> it was. it was all so new to me. i got so spoiled right off the bat. because things just really, really took off. you know, 100 miles an hour. just immediately. >> reporter: the song was a departure from her country girl next door image. turn my name into his legacy >> reporter: i was a little nervous about just the content and kind of the aggressive nature of the song. because i was on "american idol." like, i'm kind of the -- i'm a nice person. and i was thinking about all the grandmothers that sat there and voted for me. like, what are they going to think? you know. we took a chance. and it opened up so many doors
just to be strong and sassy. yeah. i mean, it's still one of my biggest hits. >> reporter: there is no stopping carrie underwood. at 32, she had enough hits to fill a greatest hits album released while she was pregnant. >> there's always so much stuff to do. even when i was pregnant i even thought, i'm going to take some time, relax, get massages twice a week. it's going to be -- i didn't didn't do anything like that. i got one massage during my entire pregnancy. the rest of the time i was working on new music, writing, recording. >> reporter: now she's adding businesswoman to her docket. with a new line of athletic wear called calia. >> the clothing line, the fitness line. you're very excited about that. >> it's just been a whole new outlet of creativity. and i'm just excited. because i get to make things that i like to live in.
>> reporter: up next for the mega star, a 40-city north american tour beginning in january. >> people are always like, what's next, what's next? i'm like, i don't know. i just keep my eyes and ears open for things that just sound like they would be interesting or fun or special. and we just see what happens after that. >> reporter: for "nightline," i'm robin roberts in nashville, tennessee. up next, over the top amenity? or totally essential? a sleep expert on why pillow menus are making their way into
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right about this hour i bet you can't put a price on a good night's sleep. the hottest hotels are now offering pillow menus full of the best paraphernalia to help you get the most luxurious shut-eye. abc's rebecca jarvis just might be an instant convert. >> this one's nice and fluffy. >> reporter: it's a truth every road warrior knows all too well -- those hotel pillows can keep you up at night.